Good afternoon family and friends. I’m going to continue what I started yesterday by sharing information regarding the illegal arrest and trial of Jesus Christ as described by Charles Swindoll. Today, we are going to look at some historical background relating to the Biblical times in which Jesus lived.
The Jews lived on a piece of land called Palestine, which was ruled by the Roman Empire. The Romans were ruled by a god on earth, Caesar. Tiberius was the Caesar at this particular time. Tiberius ruled with an Iron fist. He was a sadistic, anti-Semitic gentile, as was Pilate. It had been passed down from Rome that Palestine would never carry a prisoner to a capital punishment. The Jews could not take a life. If they could have, they would have stoned Jesus, because that was the method of killing. But since they were under Roman authority, they must crucify him; that was the Roman method of capital punishment.
So they could try a man and bring him only so far, namely to their council called the Sanhedrin. A body of seventy to seventy-three men; that’s the greater Sanhedrin,. The lesser Sanhedrin had twenty-three men, but they could not pass judgment on capital crimes. So, before the full body of men this man must stand. Once they come to an accusation they must carry that to the Roman authority, who happened to be Pilate. And when he says “thumbs down,” then and only then can death occur. And that’s why Jesus was crucified for treason rather than stoned for blasphemy.
You see, the Jews did not try him for treason, they found him guilty of blasphemy. But they twisted the accusation when they came before the Romans and they turned it into treason because, in Rome, death is instantaneous for those guilty of treason.
Contrary to popular opinion, there was not one trial for Jesus, there were six! They were not all Jewish, half of them were Jewish and half of them were Roman. First there was Annas. Then there was Caiaphas, with a body of men making up the Sanhedrin. And then third, there was this official band called the Sanhedrin. All these were Jewish trials. The whole question of treason is not even verbalized. Then it goes to trial number four, Pilate the governor. This is where they accused him of treason because they were before a Roman Civil Court. And ultimately, after trial number five, which was really a clowning experience in front of Antipas (all he wanted to see was some tricks by Jesus), he came finally to Pilate again, his sixth and final trial. Because of pressure from his wife, and because of Rome, Pilate gave the death sentence to Jesus. Pilate was never convinced of his guilt by the way, and the only half-way fair trial that Jesus got was before Pilate.
WHO EVER HEARD OF A MAN GOING TO SIX DIFFERENT TRIALS? BACK TO BACK?
To Be Continued. . .